The majority of Swedish companies, associations and legal entities must register beneficial ownership information with Bolagsverket before 1 February 2018.
Newly registered companies and associations must register beneficial ownership information within four weeks from their registration date.
What is beneficial ownership?
A beneficial owner is someone who ultimately owns or controls a company, association or other type of legal entity. A beneficial owner can also be someone who benefits from someone else acting on their behalf.
What is the purpose of the register?
In 2015, a new Anti-Money Laundering EU Directive entered into force. Its purpose is to combat money-laundering and financing of terrorism. The directive requires every EU member state to implement a central register containing details of company beneficial owners.
The purpose of the register is to give banks, the Swedish financial intelligence police unit and others access to information about who has significant control of a company. We have developed a new e-service to enable information searches in the register.
Who will have to register beneficial ownership?
This will affect around 800,000 companies and associations. Those needing to register beneficial owners include:
- Branches (the foreign-based company which owns the branch)
- Collective farming associations
- Community associations
- Co-operative banks
- Co-operative tenancy right associations
- Economic associations
- European companies (SEs)
- European cooperative associations (SCEs)
- European economic interest groupings (EEIGs)
- Insurance associations
- Insurance companies
- Joint-stock banking companies
- Limited companies
- Limited partnerships
- Mutual insurance companies
- Non-profit associations which have one or more beneficial owners
- Religious communities
- Savings banks
- Tenant-owner associations
- Trading partnerships
- Trusts (if managed from Sweden)
- Water boards
The following are exempt and do not need to register beneficial ownership:
- Estates of deceased or bankrupt persons
- Limited companies with voting shares admitted to trading on a regulated market
- Non-profit associations which do not have any beneficial owners
- Simple partnerships
- Sole traders
- The state, county councils and municipalities as well as legal entities where these have a significant deciding role